Suspected drunk driver arrested after taking Uber back to his own vehicle, Boulder police say

A Boulder man was arrested after police officers say they ordered him a ride-share car to prevent him from driving drunk, only for the man to direct the Uber driver to take him to his vehicle.

Justin Christopher Torkildsen, 37, was arrested Sunday on suspicion of DUI and reckless driving.

According to a police report, two officers were called to the St. Julien Hotel, 901 Canyon Blvd., at 12:32 a.m. Sunday after staff at the hotel called to say Torkildsen was drunk and they were worried he would try to drive.

The two officers found Torkildsen in the hotel, where he appeared to be visibly intoxicated. Torkildsen told the officers he was not going to drive and said he was going to order an Uber home, but had trouble ordering the ride.

One of the officers took Torkildsen‘s phone and noticed the Uber app was not installed, so he downloaded the app for Torkildsen and ordered him a car.

The car arrived, and officers saw Torkildsen getting in. But as the two officers were driving away, they saw the Uber turn into the hotel‘s parking garage.

The officers followed the car and saw Torkildsen hanging out the passenger window trying to find his own car with a key fob. When he found his car, Torkildsen got out of the Uber, got in his car and began driving rapidly the wrong way through the parking garage.

The officers were able to stop him on the entrance ramp, where Torkildsen said he was not fit to drive and admitted to having four “fruit punch-type” drinks that night, according to the report.

He failed roadside maneuvers and registered a .226 blood-alcohol level when given a breath test.

Torkildsen was booked and released on a $500 personal recognizance bond and is set for an arraignment on July 11. He has no prior criminal history in Colorado.

Boulder police spokeswoman Shannon Aulabaugh said it is not unusual for officers to try and find a person who appears to be intoxicated a ride home if they have not yet gotten into a car.

“If police become aware someone is going to drive under the influence they will attempt, when manpower allows, to assist them in finding a safe ride home,” Aulabaugh said.